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Title: Who should care for our babies?
Contributor(s): Sims, Margaret  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2009
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Abstract: Who should care for our youngest children? For decades, Western society has emphasised the importance of mothers as their children's first carers, and the research agenda has supported this. However, the world is changing around us and successful approaches to child rearing from the past do not necessarily meet the needs of today's families. In this paper I argue that an exclusive focus on maternal care is detrimental to the well-being if many infants. Involvement of others in a circle of attachment around infants is, I argue, a strong protective factor, buffering infants against the risks in their environments. Evidence from anthropology suggests that the involvement of allo-parents in the rearing of infants is, in fact, something that has existed for humans (and other primates) for a much longer time than has the concept of the nuclear family. At a time when we are debating the care of infants, we need to ensure that in our reflections we clearly separate our ideologies from the available evidence.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: The First Years: Ngā Tau Tuatahi. New Zealand Journal of Infant and Toddler Education, 11(1), p. 7-10
Publisher: Auckland College of Education, University of Auckland
Place of Publication: Auckland, New Zealand
ISSN: 1175-0529
Field of Research (FOR): 130102 Early Childhood Education (excl Maori)
170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing
160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO): 940112 Families and Family Services
940105 Childrens/Youth Services and Childcare
940104 Careers Development and Welfare
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article
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